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  • March 5, 2011
  • 10:30 AM

A case of congenital beat deafness?

by Henkjan Honing in Music Matters

Of most people that claim things like ‘Oh, but I’m not musical at all’, ‘I’m hopeless at keeping a tune’ or ‘I have no sense of rhythm’, only a small percentage turn out to be unmusical. The condition is known as amusia, and those who suffer from it are literally music-deficient. It is a rather exceptional, mostly inherited condition that comprises a range of handicaps in recognising or reproducing melodies and rhythms. It has been estimated that about 4 per cent of the people in........ Read more »

Phillips-Silver, J., Toiviainen, P., Gosselin, N., Piché, O., Nozaradan, S., Palmer, C., & Peretz, I. (2011) Born to dance but beat deaf: A new form of congenital amusia. Neuropsychologia. DOI: 10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2011.02.002  

Honing, H., Ladinig, O., Háden, G., & Winkler, I. (2009) Is Beat Induction Innate or Learned?. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1169(1), 93-96. DOI: 10.1111/j.1749-6632.2009.04761.x  

  • March 4, 2011
  • 08:45 AM

Apologies & Neurasthenia

by John Wayland in The Darwin Tribune

Firstly, I must apologise. It has been too long since my last entry and I fear it may be sometime before my next after this. I'm in the middle (or rather, the end) of my final year as an undergraduate and have been focusing on my dissertation and final assignments.However, I'd like to briefly mention Neurasthenia. This video does an excellent job of discussing this largely unknown disorder in depth.An excellent article of regarding Neurasthenia has appeared in the March 2011 issue of the Th........ Read more »

Rollin, H. (2004) 'Neurasthenia'. The British Journal of Psychiatry, 184(6), 545-545. DOI: 10.1192/bjp.184.6.545  

  • March 4, 2011
  • 07:03 AM

Simple Jury Persuasion: Don’t tell me what to do!

by Rita Handrich in The Jury Room

We may believe we make our decisions based on facts and logic. That would likely be incorrect. We are easily malleable and can be encouraged to reverse our choices/preferences with a simple, one-sentence directive. How so? It turns out that simply expressing a preference and then being told to “choose one to reject” makes us [...]

Related posts:Simple Jury Persuasion: Using counter-factual thinking to your advantage
Simple Jury Persuasion: You may want to disagree with this post
Simple Jur........ Read more »

JULIANO LARAN, & KEITH WILCOX. (2011) Choice, Rejection, and Elaboration on Preference-Inconsistent Alternatives . JOURNAL OF CONSUMER RESEARCH. info:/

  • March 3, 2011
  • 06:29 PM

National Languages Curriculum

by Ingrid Piller in Language on the Move

My daughter attends a public elementary school in NSW where the children are taught French for one hour each week. In 2009, she was away from her school for one year and did not receive any French instruction during that … Continue reading →... Read more »

Clyne, Michael. (2005) Australia's Language Potential. UNSW Press. info:/

  • March 3, 2011
  • 09:47 AM

Earthquakes And Antipsychotics

by Neuroskeptic in Neuroskeptic

According to a clever little paper just out from Italy, prescriptions for antipsychotic drugs skyrocketed in the months following a major earthquake. But there are some surprising details.On 6th April 2009, an earthquake hit L'Aquila, a medium-sized city in central Italy. Out of about 100,000 people living in the L'Aquila area, over 600 died and over 60,000 were displaced: a major disaster for the local people.Rossi et al from the University of L'Aquila looked at medication prescription in the 6........ Read more »

  • March 3, 2011
  • 02:00 AM

Gorbachev reflects on lessons learned from the Chernobyl disaster

by SAGE Insight in SAGE Insight

Chernobyl 25 years later: Many lessons learned  From Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists The former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev contributes this essay to the special issue – Chernobyl: 25 years later where he looks back at the catastrophic accident in 1986 at the Chernobyl nuclear power station in Ukraine and writes how, two and a [...]... Read more »

Gorbachev, M. (2011) Chernobyl 25 years later: Many lessons learned. Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, 67(2), 77-80. DOI: 10.1177/0096340211399746  

  • March 2, 2011
  • 08:23 AM

Genetic distance and economic development

by Jason Collins in Evolving Economics

The History and Geography of Human Genes has probably influenced the way I think about human evolution more than any other book. Even though it is getting old at a time when masses of population genetic data are being accumulated, a flip through the maps depicting the geographic distribution of genes provides a picture that [...]... Read more »

Spolaore, E., & Wacziarg, R. (2009) The Diffusion of Development . Quarterly Journal of Economics, 124(2), 469-529. DOI: 10.1162/qjec.2009.124.2.469  

  • March 2, 2011
  • 07:02 AM

Revenge is best served cold

by Doug Keene in The Jury Room

What does that saying mean? An internet search yields the information that emotional detachment and planning (“cold blooded”) are best for taking revenge.  [We need to take a moment here to remind you to not use proverbs that no one under 70 understands in the courtroom.] And this isn’t about how to get revenge anyway. It’s about [...]

Related posts:Better find something besides DNA & hard science to persuade the jury!
Inviting jurors to actually ‘speak the truth’ i........ Read more »

Gollwitzer, M., Meder, M., & Schmitt, M. (2010) What gives victims satisfaction when they seek revenge?. European Journal of Social Psychology. info:/

  • March 2, 2011
  • 02:00 AM

Less educated police officers are found to be more likely to use force

by SAGE Insight in SAGE Insight

The effect of higher education on police behaviorFrom Police Quarterly Police scholars and practitioners have long called for the adoption of a college education requirement for police officers as a condition of employment. Since the professional movement in the early 1900s, the importance of education was seen as a means to a better style of [...]... Read more »

  • February 28, 2011
  • 03:47 PM

Mirror, Mirror on my Facebook Wall…

by Scicurious in Neurotic Physiology

…who is the fairest/funniest/raises the most for charity/has the cutest child/dog/cat/hamster/is best foodie/goes to the coolest places/the most popular of ALL? Duh! ME! (Hat tip to DNLee, who introduced me to this song. I LOVE this song.) Gonzales and Hancock. “Mirror, Mirror on my Facebook Wall: Effects of Exposure to Facebook on Self-Esteem” CYBERPSYCHOLOGY, BEHAVIOR, [...]... Read more »

  • February 28, 2011
  • 02:05 PM

When greenbelts fail

by Tim De Chant in Per Square Mile

Parks are often preservationists’ first line of defense against sprawl. To many, they’re a win-win arrangement—less rambling development and more open space. But the same qualities that make them attractive to planners—higher property values, more recreational opportunities, and pleasing aesthetics—also draws new residents, undermining their sprawl-fighting virtues. Greater London and the San Francisco Bay Area [...]... Read more »

  • February 28, 2011
  • 01:56 PM

Anti-carnivore alliances as community symbols

by DeLene Beeland in Wild Muse

When wolves and livestock, or pets, come into conflict with each other, people’s tolerance for wolves on the landscape tends to decrease. Part of the problem is the economic loss to the livestock producer, so some predator conservation organizations offer compensation payments for wolf-killed livestock as a tool to increase tolerance for wolves. Additional reasons [...]... Read more »

  • February 28, 2011
  • 11:31 AM

Conduct a Social Media Analysis on Your Potential Jurors (But Beware of False Expectations of Privacy)

by Persuasion Strategies in Persuasive Litigator

An enhanced ability to gather information online has run into direct conflict with users' sometimes unrealistic expectations of privacy. The latest area of controversy is the use of such information during the process of jury selection. In this post, I defend the practice of checking on a jurors public information online, while at the same time suggesting that there are right and wrong ways to do it. ... Read more »

Alessandro Acquisti and Ralph Gross. (2010) Imagined communities: Awareness, information sharing, and privacy on the Facebook. Privacy Enhancing Technologies (PET) Workshop, 36-58. info:/

  • February 28, 2011
  • 07:00 AM

Political Ecology at Home – Lessons from Abroad?

by Bluegrass Blue Crab in Southern Fried Science

Political ecology within the First World came from a gradual realization that the definition of the field did not only apply to exotic cultures abroad, but had resonance domestically. As first defined by Blaikie and Brookfield (1987), political ecology combines “the concerns of ecology and a broadly defined political economy. Together this encompasses the [...]... Read more »

  • February 26, 2011
  • 02:31 PM

Peer Effects in Education

by Michael Bishop in Permutations

Who would deny that friends, especially those in the same classroom, influence how much each other learn.  This seems like a really important process to understand.  It’s one of my research interests.  Unfortunately it’s really hard! Mark, over at Observational Epidemiology, links us to VOXEU for a paper attempting to shed light on the topic. [...]... Read more »

Eleonora Pattachini and Yves Zenou. (2011) Dynamic Aspects of Teenage Friendships and Educational Attainment. Center for Economic Policy Research. info:other/DP8223

  • February 26, 2011
  • 11:59 AM

Imitation and Social Cognition (III): Man’s best friend

by Michael in A Replicated Typo 2.0


In my two previous posts (here and here) about imitation and social cognition I wrote about experiments which showed that

1)  young children tend to imitate both the necessary as well as the unnecessary actions when shown how to get at a reward, whereas wild chimpanzees only imitate the necessary actions.

And that

2) both 14-month old human infants . . . → Read More: Imitation and Social Cognition (III): Man’s best friend... Read more »

Range F, Viranyi Z, & Huber L. (2007) Selective imitation in domestic dogs. Current biology : CB, 17(10), 868-72. PMID: 17462893  

  • February 26, 2011
  • 06:59 AM

Where is home?

by Ingrid Piller in Language on the Move

Many of the people close to my heart are transnationals such as myself. Belonging is a frequently discussed topic in my circles, and often a topic that is surrounded by considerable angst. Where do we belong? Is it really worth … Continue reading →... Read more »

  • February 25, 2011
  • 07:02 AM

A screwdriver: The new addition to your trial toolbox? (We think not.)

by Doug Keene in The Jury Room

You truly never know what you’ll need in court. The unexpected happens. We are here to give you an edge. Back in May, 2010 we wrote about how people tend to remember things more when they are placed to their left. So we recommended you place your exhibits to the left while casually moving opposing [...]

Related posts:You’re on trial: Is it better to be an atheist or a black radical Muslim lesbian?
“Reactions vary along traditional partisan lines”
Secret Weapon: The Chairs in th........ Read more »

Oppenheimer, D., & Trail, T. (2010) Why leaning to the left makes you lean to the left: Effect of spatial orientation on political attitudes. Social Cognition, 28(5). info:/

  • February 24, 2011
  • 05:07 PM

It’s not the yard that matters, it’s the view

by Tim De Chant in Per Square Mile

Americans love their privacy. Most aren’t keen on high rises or even attached condos, having been imprinted with a very specific American dream—that of a single-family house on a quarter acre lot. I’m one of them. But as populations in cities and suburbs boom, there’s simply less land to go around. The result of cramming [...]... Read more »

  • February 24, 2011
  • 07:43 AM

Sacred Values as Heuristics

by Psychothalamus in Psychothalamus

Can being faced with a decision involving morals be a good thing? Research has shown in the past that morally-laden decisions are perceived as difficult and unpleasant. Therefore, conventional wisdom suggests that people would react characteristically when faced with decision-making with moral considerations, such as avoiding being placed in a position to make moral decisions, or spending more time contemplating over difficult moral decisions.However, perhaps there's more to it than meets t........ Read more »

Martin Hanselmann, & Carmen Tanner. (2008) Taboos and conflicts in decision making: Sacred values, decision difficulty, and emotions. Judgment and Decision Making, 3(1). info:/

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